Tag Archives: Dietitian UK

A Client’s story: Dee’s Vegan Lent.

I’d like to introduce you all to Dee,  she’s an inspiration. I’ve been helping her with her eating and she’s been lovely enough to share her journey with you all. Please take a moment to read it.
“I’m a bit of a blogger on the quiet, so I was dead chuffed to be asked to write a guest post for DietitianUK.
 As a 33 year old, relatively fit and healthy, employed, mother of two, you would be forgiven for wondering why I wanted/needed the professional support of a dietitian.
This process started as a bit of office banter. I am the Corporate and Community Fundraiser for Hampshire homelessness charity, the Society of St James. 2012 is the 40th anniversary year of the Society, and we thought that was worth marking in the fundraising department. We proposed that individuals might like to undertake sponsored challenges based around the number 40, which so happens to be the number of days in lent when you take out the Sundays.
That’s where my challenge comes in. I always undertake some form of lent challenge with a view to a life change thereafter, so it tends to be something I have been wanting to address like my shopping habits. On this occasion though, it’s been somewhat more dramatic. My boss challenged me to go vegan for lent.
46 days of veganism is what My VeganLent is, raising money to support Hampshire’s homeless and most vulnerable people (through the work of SSJ) is why I am doing it.
I have a history of depression, and I felt that a radical diet change could potentially affect both my physical and mental health so I made an appointment to see DietitianUK – Priya. We started the planning and preparation process in January, with a follow up consultation in early February and ongoing contact and support via email throughout.
I am only one week and one day into being a vegan, and I can’t honestly say how easy/hard it is yet. I have started to really miss cheese, and cake (which makes it sound like I eat those things all the time – I don’t) but I feel that it’s going well at the moment.
 Embarking on this challenge with the support of a dietitian has meant that I am making informed choices over what I consume and how best to make up the potential deficits in my nutrition.
What has surprised me more is the problems and dysfunctions I had/have with food. Rather than focusing on what I can or can’t eat for this period, we (that is me working with Priya) have started the process of addressing some of those dysfunctions.
I respond well to challenges, so for January my challenge was to eat breakfast. That’s it. One challenge, no more no less, just eat breakfast. It’s now 29th February and I am STILL eating breakfast almost daily. February’s challenge was to increase (by one item) and vary lunches. Again, one step at a time, but if you look over on my own blog you”ll see that My Vegan Lent is shaping up well because I am eating a varied, balanced diet.”

Winner of Theo Paphitis #SBS Award

This week  Dietitian UK won a Small Business Sunday (#SBS) Award from Theo Paphitis from Dragonʼs Den. This is a weekly competition on Twitter. Small Businesses send a tweet saying what they do and Theo chooses 6 businesses which he then re-tweets to all of his followers. This week I decided to join in the fun and was absolutely pleasantly surprised to WIN.

I’m very excited to see where this may lead and hope it not only helps my business but that it boosts the profile of other dietitian’s too.

Dietitian UK is a small, local business, based in Southampton, Hampshire that works with companies, businesses, community groups and individuals with the aim of giving sound, effective nutrition advice to improve health. Work includes private consultations, menu redesign, recipes, product work, leaflets, PR and media work.

Priya is a registered dietitian with a passion for nutrition, she loves to inspire change and creativity in eating. With her experience and a fresh approach Dietitian UK can help you and your business.

 

Hydration – Am I drinking enough?

The human body is 50-70% water, we cannot survive without it. Water carries nutrients around the body and waste products out of the body, it helps regulate body temperature and acts as a lubricant. It can also help with weight loss!

It’s well known that it’s not a good idea to get dehydrated. This can lead to fatigue, headaches, thirst, weakness, your speech and mental alertness can be affected. However this doesn’t mean you should drink as much as possible. Too much fluid (overhydration) will dilute the sodium and potassium balance in your blood, possibly leading to brain seizures and behavioural changes.

 

How do you know you are getting enough fluid?

It’s not pretty but the best way to tell is to look at your urine. If you are properly hydrated your urine should be a light yellow colour (1-3), if it is 4-5 you should have a drink and the 6-8 range is dehydration.

 

Hydration chart
Hydration chart

 

 

How much do we need to drink?

Specific guidelines have not been set for adults in the UK as there is so much variability between individuals. As a dietitian I use the figure 35ml of water per kg of body weight. This means a 70kg person would need about 2.5 litres of water a day. Surveys carried out on the UK population show men take in average of 3.4 litres a day and women 2.7 litres fluid a day.

Sounds like a lot? This isn’t all through drinking fluid. We take in water from our food as well, around 1 litre a day.

The best thing to do is to drink little and often, according to thirst. Have drinks with meals and if you are out and about a lot, take a drink with you.

What to drink?

Water is always the best drink to have, but not always what you want to drink. You can safely drink up to 4 cups of tea and coffee a day. Other good choices include 1 glass of fruit juice a day, milk, no added sugar squash, fruit and herbal teas.

This post was written for Slimsticks.

Peppers stuffed with Quinoa (Wheat free, GF, DF)

I love vegetarian food, though I’m not actually a vegetarian. I love the colours, flavours and creativeness of it. We tend to have meatless meals 3-4 days a week and use lentils, beans and pulses a lot.

Last week I really fancied having a go with Quinoa, its not something we eat that often but being wheat free I can’t eat cous cous and had had an urge for making stuffed peppers, plus the baby hadn’t given Quinoa a go yet.

These came our really well, even if my husband had to take his in a plastic tub back to work to eat as his on-call phone rang! His comments were that it was difficult to eat without a knife but the Quinoa was delicious and nutty. The baby managed to eat hers all without a knife 😉 fingers sufficed and the whole lot went quite quickly, so I’m taking that as a compliment.


Recipe:

Remove the stalk and seeds from the pepper and then halve them, roast in the oven for about 30 mins at Gas Mark 5.

Saute a mix of veggies (I used mushrooms and courgettes), cook the Quinoa using stock and then add to the veggies with a little stock and plenty of fresh herbs.

Stuff it all in the pepper and top with grated cheese, bake until the cheese bubbles (Use Cheezly if you are dairy free as it melts best). Yum yum.

Visualisation leads to better dietary change

An interesting piece of research caught my eye this week. A team of psychology researchers in Montreal looked into how using mental imagery techniques may increase the likelihood of people eating more fruit and vegetables. They asked 177 students to aim to eat more fruit over the next 7 days. Those who planned, wrote it down and visualised how they were going to do it (e.g. where and when they would buy, prepare and eat the fruit) were twice as likely to increase their consumption.

 Plant-Based-Foods

This was based on sports psychology. “Athletes do lots of work mentally rehearsing their performances before competing and it’s often very successful. So we thought having people mentally rehearse how they were going to buy and eat their fruit should make it more likely that they would actually do it. And this is exactly what happened,” says Bärbel Knäuper.

 

As a dietitian part of my job is helping people plan how they will manage to alter their eating habits so this research is further evidence that planning really is key. Talking through with someone what your long term goals are, how you can put them into place and having a short term goal to achieve are vital components of achieving dietary change.

 

 

Reference:

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21337259